Stock show, rodeo seek volunteers
COURTESY/S.A. Stock Show & Rodeo
“Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” recipient Shilo Harris of Wilson County (far right) joins the celebration to welcome home retired U.S. Army Sgt. Ken Patterson during a Wounded Warriors night in 2011. Harris and his wife are active members of the Rodeo Ticket Committee.
SAN ANTONIO -- Wanted: Someone to work six, 6-hour shifts and attend three meetings a year to promote the ag industry and Western heritage, and help make dreams come true. Volunteers will work with an organization that has committed more than $123 million since its inception to the youth of Texas. This ranges from scholarships, grants, and endowments to livestock auctions, a student Western art auction, calf scramble programs, and show premiums paid to young exhibitors.
If you are interested, then you might want to volunteer for the 64th San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo, which continues through Sunday, Feb. 24, at the AT&T Center/Freeman Coliseum grounds.
The volunteers, numbering more than 5,500, are a major part of why the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo is “one of the largest educational assistance providers in the state” and a venue for fun for the whole family. See “Volunteer opportunities” for more.
Wilson County residents contribute greatly to the success of the show. Jenny Nagelmueller, communications director of the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo, estimates that 40 percent of the volunteers are from Wilson County.
Want to join?
Abrego Development Co.’s Kevin Brown, who heads the Horse Show Committee, shared what is involved in volunteering. The Horse Show Committee -- ranked No. 2 behind the livestock committee -- coordinates the horse shows and sales throughout the rodeo.
According to Brown, normally new volunteers start in July, but are welcome any time. Using the horse show as an example, Brown outlined a schedule of three shifts per day throughout the duration of the show. The shifts are 6 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., noon to 6:30 p.m., and 6 p.m. to midnight (or closing).
Volunteers are asked to attend three of six meetings a year, and to work six, 6-hour shifts. While some volunteers work only six shifts, others work as many as 30. Brown works 51 shifts, not counting the other hours devoted to promoting the show and supporting the agriculture industry.
Brown said that the horse show is divided into subcommittees. As chairman of the arena subcommittee, he works with the Go Western event, seven horse shows, five other horse-related events, and more. The barn and feed subcommittee members provide a “full-service hotel for horses,” which includes 750 stalls.
Brown’s wife is a co-vice chairman of the tack subcommittee, which manages two feed stores on the rodeo grounds. These supply feed and hay for the livestock exhibitors, the rodeo contestants, the Petting Zoo, and the Family Fair animals.
The Horse Show Committee also oversees the Horse Discovery exhibit in the Expo Hall. Youth Connection is another subcommittee that interacts with the youth. To apply, volunteers must be at least 15 years old; experience with farm/ranch life is an advantage.
Those interested in joining this award-winning team, which has earned the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association’s Large Indoor Rodeo of the Year for eight consecutive years, can visit SArodeo.com. Head out to enjoy the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo and see in action the many volunteers “helping youth today so that agriculture can grow tomorrow.”
Volunteers assist the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo through 36 different rodeo committees. Some of these are the Ambassador Committee, the Auction Committee, the Calf Scramble Committee, the Cowboy Church Committee, the Exhibits Committee, the Family Fair Committee, the Hall of Fame Committee, the Horse Show Committee, the Livestock Committee, the Ranch Rodeo Committee, the Rodeo Contestant Hospitality Committee, the S.A.L.E. For Kids Committee, the Scholarship Committee, the School Tours Committee, the Souvenir Committee, and the Western Art Committee.
For more information or to volunteer, call 210-225-5851 or visit www.sarodeo.com/explore/committees.
Monetary donations toward the committee work and scholarships are also encouraged. Just specify the committee you wish to assist.